Injury ravaged Portsmouth travel north to face Rochdale


Pressure still looms over Portsmouth boss Kenny Jackett as his injury-hit side face a struggling Rochdale.

‘The Blues’ sit in 13th position and visit ‘the Dale’ searching for their second away win of the campaign. A victory could see them climb back into the top half of the table for the first time since the middle of October. 

After losing just once in their opening six league games, Rochdale have really struggled to pick up any sort of form. Just three wins in 12 has seen them drop to 16th place with sides around them having games in hand. Although, they should remain positive sitting six points above the relegation zone. 

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But they will have to venture up north without skipper Tom Naylor, after he picked up an injury in last week’s FA Cup win over Harrogate Town. A big miss for Jackett’s men, the powerful presence in the midfield is expected back at the start of next month. 

Pompey will also be without the versatile Ross McCrorie and defender Sean Raggett, as the pair also picked up injuries in recent weeks. Although it seems they’ll both be back around the same time as Naylor, putting the trio in contention again ahead of the visit of promotion candidates Peterborough, on December 7th.

Keeping last season’s top scorer Ian Henderson fit remains key for Rochdale, the 34-year-old has netted nine times already this campaign. And you wouldn’t bet against him adding to his tally against a Portsmouth side who are making the trip without some important defensive players. 

Manager Kenny Jackett isn’t keen to make any excuses regarding injuries, insisting his side must put in the work, if they are leave Spotland with three points:

“Nothing beats hard work and we’ve been clawing away to build on some pretty good form and produce winning performances.

“They’re a very good footballing side and we always have some competitive matches against them.

“It was a hard-earned win at their place in the league last season and we’ll have to be at our best to get anything.”

No doubt this a big game in League One for both teams. It won’t be the best watch, but expect passion and grit because this fixture, both teams will feel, has come at the right time for them to get a result and their season’s going.


Portsmouth wins: 8

Draws: 2

Rochdale wins: 1


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